KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Senate Contests Touch On Contraception, Health Reform Issues

Media outlets report on how these issues are being debated in Senate campaigns in Massachusetts and Texas.  

The Associated Press: In Mass., GOP's US Sen. Brown Invoking Kennedy
[Sen. Scott] Brown, who favors giving employers and health insurers broad moral and religious exemptions in health care coverage, has repeatedly quoted a letter that Kennedy, dying from brain cancer, asked President Barack Obama to hand-deliver to Pope Benedict XVI in Rome in 2009. ... Brown has seized on a portion of the letter in which the prominent Catholic politician tells the Pope that he believes "in a conscience protection for Catholics in the health field." Kennedy made the comments in the context of the fight over Obama's health care overhaul bill (LeBlanc, 2/23).

Boston Globe: Brown, Warren Release Radio Ads On Contraception Issue
Brown's ad highlights his support for amendment which would allow all employers to deny medical coverage based on moral objections. He calls it a religious freedom issue, "one of our most precious rights." [Democratic challenger Elizabeth] Warren's ad refers to a recent Congressional hearing about birth control that had no women testifying as an example that "Washington really doesn't get it" (Bierman, 2/23).

The Dallas Morning News: James Proposes Amendment To Gut 'Obamacare'
Republican Senate hopeful Craig James, saying he fears the Supreme Court will uphold the federal health care law and President Barack Obama could get re-elected, says he would propose changing the U.S. Constitution to outlaw any government requirement that individuals buy health insurance. "I would file a bill that would call for a constitutional amendment that guarantees the freedom and the liberty of every citizen to pick and choose if and what kind of health care they want," James said Thursday (Garrett, 2/23).

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